Nothing stops the MotorStorm festival: not dirt, mud, rivers, volcanoes, or even the damn apocalypse. Last Friday on the PlayStation Blog, Sony announced that Evolution Studios would be returning to their racing franchise in destructive fashion. MotorStorm: Apocalypse trades the lush jungles and and craggy canyons of the first two MotorStorm games for the earthquake-ravaged West Coast of the United States. You'll still have access to a garage full of different vehicle types--from bikes and dirt buggies to trucks and supercars--only this time, you'll be driving them through crumbled buildings, fallen bridges, and ravines formed in the wake of the earthquakes
The key to the new MotorStorm game--and this new urban setting--is that the game isn't set in the present-apocalypse. No "pre" or "post" need to be applied. You'll race through the city and quickly learn that Armageddon is only just beginning; new earthquakes will continue to tear the city apart as your race progresses, and changes to the environment in one race will carry over to later runs on that course, meaning that the tracks will become more ravaged and ruined as your race goes on. To make matters worse (or maybe better? It's hard to know what MotorStorm racers are thinking) the city hasn't been abandoned. There are some menacing factions of racers still operating in the city, and they're looking to tear apart the Bay Area as badly as you want to race through it.
Sony and Evolution also revealed that they've taken the same lessons about persistent progression in multiplayer games that every other game online genre has, so expect a leveling system and a wide range of swappable perks to accompany the return of MotorStorm's 16 player vehicle madhouse.
It sounds like Evolution is making some interesting changes to modernize the franchise while retaining the specific mechanics that made MotorStorm interesting in the first place. What do you folks think about the changes? You'll have plenty of time to think about it; no release date was given for Apocalypse.